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Game 44: Vancouver @ Nashville – WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW


Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images

The Canucks come into Bridgestone Arena 4-2-0 in their last six games and are leading the Northwest Division by five points over the Minnesota Wild. Vancouver has the talented offensive forwards with stalwart defense to shut down opponents. They also employ a dangerous one/two punch in net with Luongo and Schneider, both with winning records and 7 shutouts between them.

Nashville is getting a long look at the up-and-coming crop of forwards for the future of the franchise. The addition of Filip Forsberg to the lineup provided some spark against the Red Wings, but the Predators who are injury-riddled are still sliding into a higher draft position while on a a six-game losing streak. Coincidentally, this current slide started with the trade of Erat and Latta for the aforementioned Forsberg.

Vancouver has a commanding lead in the Northwest division due to hard-nosed play and staying under the radar, dominated by the play of Anaheim and Chicago. The Sedin twins are still scoring at an unbelievable clip leading the team with Henrik’s 39 points and Daniel with 35. Alexandre Burrows has returned to his goal scoring ways from a season before last with a team leading 12 goals. For a team that has a +12 goal differential, the Canucks boast amazing +/- numbers where the players who have at least 20 games, only five players have a negative plus/minus rating (Henrik Sedin and Burrows are in the top 15 in the NHL).

Cory Schneider has a 3-1-0 record in his last four games with two shutouts in that span. Luongo spelled Schneider against the Flames last Wednesday with a 40 save, one-goal win. Either goalie can spell doom for a team, especially with Nashville’s non-existent scoring. It is feasible that Luongo may get the start against the Predators as he has the most overall success over the Predators this season (2-0-0).

The Predators are lacking leadership and cohesiveness with the subtraction of Gaustad, Hornqvist, Fisher, Wilson, Bourque and Yip being on the shelf. The organization is using this opportunity to showcase the young talent from Milwaukee and bringing in the highly touted draft prospect Filip Forsberg. Forsberg looked lively in his first game with the Predators registering two SOG, but he finished the game -2 and the Predators still can’t seem to find the back of the net on home ice.

Six equals the number of goals the Predators have scored at home in the month of April with a record of 1-5-0 at 501 Broadway. They have also been shutout in three of their last five games losing 1-0 in two of them. Pekka Rinne’s numbers, as highlighted by the Lochinvar Hot Stat of the Game Sunday night, was his amazing GAA and SV% recently, but the inability of Nashville to put some biscuits in the basket is leaving Rinne’s performance the only bright spot on what has been a dismal 6-game skid.

Game time is at 7:00 P.M. Central and can be heard on 102.5 the Game and viewed locally on FS Tennessee. If you like what you’re reading or have questions/comments feel free to write us below or follow us on Twitter @Preducated and @ThePredatorial.


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